Deportivo Alavés, S.A.D. [deporˈtiβo alaˈβes]; (Sporting Alavés), usually abbreviated to Alavés, is a Spanish football club based in Vitoria-Gasteiz, Álava, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country. Founded in 1921 it plays in La Liga, holding home matches at the 19,800-seater Estadio Mendizorrotza.
Its biggest success was in 2001 when, in the year of its debut in European competition, it was one of the finalists in the 2001 UEFA Cup Final against Liverpool, being defeated 5–4 by golden goal.
The team's home kit is blue and white-striped shirt, blue shorts and white socks.
After years of seriously facing disappearance, which went well into the 90s, the club finally achieved a Segunda División promotion in 1994–95 after two consecutive years winning Segunda División B – created as the new third level in 1977 – but consistently failing in the promotion play-offs.
In 1998–99 Alavés returned to the top level after a 42-year hiatus, achieving two wins against Barcelona in the following season, in which they would, for the first time, qualify for the UEFA Cup, ending the season sixth.
In 2000–01 the Basque club reached the final of the UEFA Cup, a 4–5 loss against Liverpool (taking the game to extra time, and losing following an own golden goal), as well as finishing tenth in the domestic campaign.
Although Alavés were relegated after 2002–03, they regained top flight status two years later. In this time, Alavés was bought by Dmitry Pietrman, an Ukrainian-American businessman, and several clashes occurred with the club's coaches, players and fans alike.Pietrman left in 2007 and after two years of battling with relegation to the third level, the club deep in debt eventually befell in 2008–09.
This black period lasted four years until it finally promoted again to the second division in 2013 and could sort out its difficult economy. Three years later, on 29 May 2016, Alavés was promoted to La Liga after beating Numancia 2–0.
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